Using Markdown

There are quite a few packages to convert Markdown to HTML,

  • Pandoc – Supports formats other than Markdown
  • commonmark-hs – Lightweight parser by the same author of Pandoc
  • mmark – Strict Markdown parser


Ema provides a helper to parse Markdown files with YAML frontmatter, using commonmark-hs. If you are parsing front matter, you can use any type that has a FromYAML instance.

import qualified Ema.Helper.Markdown as Markdown

-- Front matter metadata can be any type with a `FromYAML` instance
-- Using a `Map` is a lazy way to capture metadata, but in real code we
-- generally define a sum type and manually derive `FromYAML` for it.
type Metadata = Map Text Text 

-- Returns `Either Text (Metadata, Pandoc)`
Markdown.parseMarkdownWithFrontMatter @Metadata 
    "" "Hello *world*"

The template repo, as well as Emanote (used to generate this site), uses this helper to parse Markdown files into Pandoc AST. Consult the template repo’s source code for details.

Note that with Ema you can get hot reload support for your Markdown files using filesystem notifications.

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